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IT'S ALL IN THE GRIND; championship today's games Murray knows exactly how Killie can bounce back to top flight..

Byline: QOS v KILMARNOCK DARREN JOHNSTONE

FRASER MURRAY knows from experience that the Championship is not for the faint-hearted.

But the 22-year-old is confident that Tommy Wright's Kilmarnock side have what it takes to bounce back up to the Premiership at the first attempt.

Former Hibs forward Murray made 31 appearances on loan with Dunfermline in the second tier last season and was surprised by just how competitive the league was.

Killie may be the favourites for the title but Murray insists they will need to show many sides to their game if they are to succeed.

As he geared up for today's trip to face Queen of the South, Murray said: "I'm loving my time here so far and it's going well.

"Most people in football say take every game as it comes and that's what we have to do.

"I knew it was a tough league with my time at Dunfermline last year, and even Hearts would say that as well.

"You just need to try and win as many games as possible but it won't be possible to play nice football in all these games, there are times when you need to grind it out.

"There are matches like Arbroath away for example, and other games like that.

"You will not get the ball all the time and you'll have to play differently."

New-look Killie began the league season with a 2-0 derby win over Ayr last Monday and will look to keep their good start going at Palmerston.

Boss Wright overhauled the squad following their relegation but Murray insists that all the players, new and old, are already singing from the same hymn sheet.

He said: "I knew a few people when

I arrived but generally everyone was in the same boat with so many new players.

"There was Stephen McGinn, Jason Naismith, Dan Armstrong, a few others as well.

"That helped me settle in but we've all gelled well and it helped being away in Northern Ireland for pre-season as well, being around everyone in training and speaking to everyone."

The Doonhamers went down 3-2 to Partick Thistle in their Championship opener and boss Allan Johnston knows his team need to tighten up at the back.

He said: "We've brought in new players and it's going to happen that you lose goals but there were a lot of good performances against Thistle.

"I think Thistle will be up there challenging yet we more than matched them.

"But the fact is we can't afford to lose three goals and that's the frustrating part for me.

"Kilmarnock are a team with Premiership players and we'll need to play at our maximum to get points from these teams."

CAPTION(S):

WORK IN PROGRESS Murray says graft is key if Wright, below, and Killie are to succeed

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Title Annotation:News; Teasers
Author:QOS v KILMARNOCK DARREN JOHNSTONE
Publication:Daily Record (Glasgow, Scotland)
Date:Aug 7, 2021
Words:467
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